Exodus 16:2-3, Those Grumbling Travelers

In the desert the whole community grumbled against Moses and Aaron. The Israelites said to them, “If only we had died by the LORD’s hand in Egypt! There we sat around pots of meat and ate all the food we wanted, but you have brought us out into this desert to starve this entire assembly to death.”

//Just shortly after their miraculous escape from Egypt, and immediately after a joyful celebration of their deliverance, the children of Israel began to grumble that they were hungry. Odd: When they left Egypt, they took with them “large droves of livestock, both flocks and herds.” So why didn’t they stop grumbling and just kill a cow?

Perhaps the cow had become a sacred symbol to them. Perhaps they saw these cattle as “gods,” the very ones they had worshipped during their stay in Egypt. Recall that it wouldn’t be long before they constructed a golden calf.

But that doesn’t answer the question of why Moses didn’t just demand that they shut up and eat the food they brought. More likely, their raucous victory celebration, when the Egyptian army all died in the Red Sea, resulted in a feast to end all feasts, and they ate all their cattle right off the bat.

Good vacation planning, guys.

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